Monday 31 October 2016

Pumpkin Pie? With a Side Serving of ORTs!

Pumpkin-coloured Pie!  The oranges make it a little harder to see which project is which but basically I spent more days working on smaller projects because I had less stitching time than usual.

I started the month off stitching on She Tends by Shepherd's Bush hoping to get all four completed but sadly not.  I wanted to get Frosted Pumpkin done and off the list and then the Teresa Wentzler Byzantine Ornament took more days than the previous two put together!  And then I ran out of beads and had to wait for SewandSo to deliver in three days instead their usual next day.  Here is the finished piece:

stitched on 28count Burgundy linen

I also had a new start and finish for the Blog Hop which you saw then.  The Brooke's Book's letter is for The Alphabet Club next Saturday.  I can show you the latest letter on the Enchanted Alphabet.  I am stitching this one for the Now I Know My ABCs SAL for Cross Stitch Finish Line on FB.  The original design is by Lavender & Lace but I have changed the colours, the fabric and this week the placement of the letter:

Stitched on 32 count Tiger Lily Murano from Sparklies

I wanted to use this fabric but it was just a little bit too short for the full design.  By removing the child from the design and moving the E to the middle (it was originally to the left of the B) the full alphabet will fit nicely onto the fabric with a good margin for framing too.

I'm continuing with Just Nan's Ghastly, Ghostly Ghouls mostly during my son's bathtime but also in my lunchbreak at work when I do a full day.  Here's the current progress picture:

stitched on 28 count lilac linen

I did change the red in the border for 919 but I still think it's a little dark for the pumpkins so I might change them to 920 or even 921.

Here's the side-serving of ORTs for this month's second TUSAL:

Spending-wise it was a much more frugal month after my Birthday extravaganza.  SewandSo revamped their website recently which caused enormous problems for everyone.  You just couldn't get anything to load and then when it did load we discovered they hadn't migrated our Wishlists in the first run, they were waiting to do that when the site was working properly.  Or when enough people complained!  Originally they offered us all a 10% discount from the website but after all the problems they upped it to a £5 voucher.  When I was eventually able to get it to load I bought the beads I needed for Byzantine Ornament and some lovely Lime Green 32 count for my Hallowe'en SAL project for next year.  

Beads £1.27
Lime Green Fabric £10.95
Total £12.22

Good practise for the Stitch from Stash next year.

Finally, don't forget to vote for me!

Hallowe'en Trick Or Treat Blog Hop 2016

Trick or Treat!

A collage of the spooky stitches I have completed since the last Blog Hop!

Welcome to the spooky hallowe’en mystery phrase blog hop!

All you need to do is visit each of the following blogs in order, jot down the letter displayed with their Hallowe'en stitched picture then return here and leave a comment telling me the Mystery Phrase.

It'd be nice if you left a comment on their blog too, especially if it's new to you.

I have "moderate comments before publishing" enabled so no-one can copy anyone else!

There will be a small prize for one person picked at random from the guessers.  People who posted a picture  will get one chance for that and another chance if they make a guess too.

So without further ado,
start the blog hop – enter if you dare…

Kitten Stitching
Crossing One Stitch at a Time
A Patchwork of Crafts
An Arizona Stitcher
Tiffstitches a Blog
Mii Stitch
Books, Crafts and Other Procrastinations
Fireflies & Cats in the Garden
Wyrd Needles
Justine's Cross Stitch
Family Business
Reading & Stitching
Stitch Niche
Needle, Pen & Sword
Today I Found
Hokkaido Kudasai
Guava Gems
The Greytail
Beth's Needlework Stash
Oubliette - B
Stitching in Sunny California
Dragon Stitches & Stuff by Astrid
The Crafty Princess
Stitch Bitch

and finally back to me for this letter

and this picture:

This is Sampling Hallowe'en by Lizzie*Kate, a gift from Mii in our Hallowe'en Mail Art Exchange last year.  I stitched it on 28 count lilac linen using most of the recommended colours, a few changes so things would show up better on the lilac fabric, which is looking blue in this photo!  The little ghost charm was included with the chart.

Don't forget, some of us are on different time zones so if you visit a blog and can't find a letter or picture yet, pop back later in the day.  
The competition is open for one week closing 00.01 hours 7th November GMT.

happy hunting!

all from Hyraea

Thursday 27 October 2016

October Smalls SAL

The Smalls SAL is hosted by Heather from Stitching Lotus

This year I have two Small Challenges:

2. The Christmas Ornie SAL Blog

Now I have finished the Counting Bats sampler I have to find a smaller piece for each theme for the Hallowe'en blog.  This month I chose Ghastly, Ghostly Ghouls also by Just Nan for the two little cats which fit the month's theme:

stitched on 28 count lilac linen

I'm not sure if I'll finish it before the end of the month but the cats have been done.

I started a new Hallowe'en small ready for the Blog Hop:

stitched on 32 count Twilight Blue linen

This is Sampling Hallowe'en by Lizzie*Kate and was a gift from Mii for last year's Hallowe'en Mail Art Exchange.

I also completed finish-finishing my Hallowe'en Cubes from Primitive Hare:

Here's a shot showing the side fabrics, the same print in three colourways:

Now I have finished them I have started on the Christmas Cubes, also by Primitive Hare:

Here is this month's block:

stitched on 35count Country Mocha linen

And here are all eight so far:

Here's a nearly finish of the third Byzantine Ornament by Teresa Wentzler, I ran out of beads and SewandSo's delivery is no longer "next day" so I had to wait until today but have had no time to attach them:

stitched on 28 count Burgundy linen

I really should apologise to you all for giving you a scare regarding the title of my last post.  So many people thought I was getting all political on you but no, I just want you to vote for me!   My blog has been nominated in the blog category for the

By "my blog" I mean my blog and all my lovely followers who make it the happy place it is.  So please pop over and vote for us!  The first question asks if you live in the UK or not but that's only to decide if you are allowed to enter the draw.  Anyone from anywhere can vote in the awards.

Finally, the Hallowe'en Trick or Treat Blog Hop is nearly here.  I have decided on the Mystery Phrase and will be emailing all the participants tomorrow with their letter so they have plenty of time to make their post on Monday 31st.

ps this is my 600th post!

Saturday 22 October 2016

It is Your Civil Duty to Vote

No, this is not a political post!  Don't panic!  This is me blowing my own trumpet and urging you to vote for the best nominee - me!

I got an email from Immediate Media earlier this week telling me that I have been nominated in their Best Blog Category.   I was blown away and had to log on to see the other nominees.  I am in good company, there's a couple of designer blogs, one with 3 times the followers I have, a group blog and a couple of other bloggers who have really nice blogs, although one seems to be having a little break right now.  None of the blogs have my USP which is you lot!  I honestly do believe that Immediate Media have chosen my blog because of the community activities I run and take part in.  So really, this nomination is for all of us.  So go and vote for yourselves LOL

This is the website where you can vote - British Craft Awards.  There are several categories to vote in and have your say.  The first question asks if you live in the UK but that is only to assess your eligibility to be included in the prize draw.  Non UK residents can still vote, so please do!

Voting is open until 20th December but why wait?  Go and vote when you've finished reading this post!

It's been a bit of a slow week for stitching thanks to work.  The school I've been working with has placed another large order following a meeting with them on Monday so I've been looking up books and making a list and checking it twice.

So here's my day time project:

stitched on 28 count burgundy linen

This is the third in the Byzantine Ornaments series by Teresa Wentzler.  I am using the same fabric and threads as the previous two.  The yellows are as charted but the accent colour is DMC 321 for all the ornaments.  I have just started the gold backstitch for this one.   Hopefully a finish for tomorrow.

Here is my evening project:

stitched on 28count lilac linen

This one is Ghastly, Ghostly Ghouls by Just Nan.  I'm using the DMC conversion and I'm not sure about that red at the bottom.  It should be more dark orange to me.  I'm not using it for the pumpkins anyway, I need the better dark orange that she has used in some of her other designs.

Hallowe'en Blog Hop

I've had a good response to the Hallowe'en Trick or Treat Blog Hop which will take place on the 31st October.  This is your last chance to sign up.  Just leave a comment to say you'd like to take part.

Does this collection of counting pins and a scissor charm look familiar to anyone?  I feel sure I have seen the scissor charm on a blog somewhere but the name escapes me for now...

Finally, don't forget to Vote For Jo!  Remember - a Vote For Jo is a Vote for Blog Hops and SALs and all of you too.  Click this rosette to cast your vote:

Sunday 16 October 2016

October WIPocalypse Social Media

WIPocalypse is hosted by Measi's Musings

Each month we have to share the projects we want to complete before the End Of The World.

The focus of my WIPocalypse will be my "16 in '16" which are 16 projects I particularly wanted to concentrate on in 2016.   The full list can be found on my WIPocalypse page where you can also find my secondary list "16 Series in '16".

My main goal is to keep to my rotation of one small every Friday and the rest of the month working on my focus piece until it is finished.  I also have a number of SALs I want to keep up with:

The Alphabet Club - a different letter on the first Saturday of each month
Gifted Gorgeousness - post anything gifted on the 15th
Hallowe'en Ornie Blog - a different spooky theme each month
Christmas Ornie Blog - a different festive theme each month
Smalls SAL - last Thursday of each month


I have worked on 1 out of 16 projects since my last WIPocalypse, plus 3 from my series list.

9. She Tends by Shepherd's Bush

stitched on 32 count Light Mocha linen

And from the series:

1. Christmas Cubes by Primitive Hare

stitched on 35 count Country Mocha linen

6. Stitcher's Alphabet by Brooke's Books

stitched on 28 count afghan

16. Byzantine Ornaments by Teresa Wentzler

stitched on 28 count Burgundy linen
(not a good colour likeness)

Measi always gives us a topic to discuss:

October - what online stitching communities do you enjoy?

In the beginning there were bulletin board and forums.  I discovered cross stitch forums back in 2010 and enjoyed the chat on the Yuku boards for Mirabilia, San Man and Needlecraft Haven.  I also joined the Round Robin board and took part in several of those projects.  I noticed that many stitchers had links to their "blogs" in their signatures and started following a few of those.  In 2011 I took the plunge and started a blog of my own.

I had discovered that I liked to "hijack" threads, someone would say something and it would send me off at a tangent.  Well, this is my tangent, I can discuss whatever I want!

I had joined Facebook when I was pregnant with the Small Boy along with a number of women from a parenting forum.  From there I discovered the stitching groups.  My favourites are the Designer-specific groups where you can actually talk to the designer!  How amazing is that?  I also enjoy groups which organise themed SALs and I'm currently quite active on Stitch Maynia and Cross Stitch Finish Line.

The new kid on the block is FlossTube or FlaaaaaaaaasTube as the Large Boy calls it!  This is the collective name for stitching videos found on YouTube.  I do enjoy listening to a stitcher chat about her projects and showing her stash (or his projects and stash in Coffee Stitcher's case!).

For me, the drawbacks with both FB and FT are that you can't look back and find things easily.  What was that lovely Hallowe'en project I saw?  On a blog you use the labels or the search bar and there it is.   

I haven't really explored Instagram.  I like the chat and the written word in addition to the photos.  I like to know more about the stitcher and what s/he was thinking when they stitched the piece.

People keep moaning that "blogs aren't as active as they were" and I did clear a load off my blog roll recently.  But I also added a good few.  If blogs aren't so active, why have I got 82 posts to read in my "New Followers" category alone?  You have to find new people to follow, joining my blog hop is a great way to do that.

Finally, did you see what I did there, led nicely into a plug for the Hallowe'en Trick or Treat Blog Hop!  This will take place on the 31st October, of course, and all you have to do is post a picture of some spooky stitching along with a letter of the alphabet I will allocate you.  To join in, just leave a comment and I'll add you to the list.  We have a great group signed up already but the more the spookier!

Hallowe'en Blog Hop

Saturday 15 October 2016

Gifted Gorgeousness October Link-Up Post

Welcome to the Gifted Gorgeousness link-up post!  The link-up date will continue to be the 15th of each month but I will keep the linky open until the end of each month so you have plenty of time to join in.

The format remains EXACTLY the same as last year so I'm sure you are all aware of what can be included - gifts to and from you; charts, fabric or threads; shoe-horns welcome!

Since my last GG post I have worked on a few gifted pieces:

Ghostly Mandala by Ink Circles - fabric was a gift from Rachel:

stitched on 32 count Autumnal Woodland by Crafty Kitten

Senor and Senorita Sugar Skull by Brooke's Books - a gift for my niece and her fiance:

stitched on perforated paper and finished as fridge magnets

She Tends by Shepherd's Bush - a gift from Kati

stitched on 32 count Light Mocha Linen

Hallowe'en Town by Frosted Pumpkin Stitchery - a gift from Sharon:

stitched on 28 count Moondust by Crafty Kitten

This is about half the design but I am stopping here and calling it a finish for various reasons!  My favourite part is the house, I blended two shades to make a nice mottled effect.

Here is the place for you to link up so we can see what Gifted Gorgeousness you have been stitching so far this year.  Please use your name or your blog name in the field NOT the words "October Update" so I can easily see who has linked up this month.
And link to the actual post, not just your blog.  It is easier if you copy and paste the link, rather than typing freehand.
Thank you.  I can amend links if you make a boo-boo though.



We have a special GGGG this month or a Gorgeous Guest Gifted Giveaway.  Hosted by the lovely Rosey from Ishkabibble:

So hop over to Ishkabibble to find out how to enter the GGGG.

Finally, the Hallowe'en Trick or Treat Blog Hop:

Hallowe'en Blog Hop

Click on the picture to find out how to join in!  I will be sending confirmation emails to everyone who has left a comment so far.  It's been a busy week!